New HTA research highlights opportunity for bedding plant sector

Andrew Maxted, Director of Marketing and Communications at the HTA comments: “The UK bedding plant market is now worth roughly £570m but with 20% of plant purchasers not buying bedding plants there is still huge scope for growth within the sector. The industry should be ‘up selling’ bedding plants to consumers who are willing to purchase plants, but to whom bedding is virgin territory.”

Unveiled at yesterday’s (28 October 2010) HTA Bedding Focus conference the report stresses the importance of catering to specific needs. The research highlights the need to provide younger less experienced consumers with information, inspiration and ideas for bedding plants and how they can be used in their gardens.

Presenting the findings, HTA Market Information Manager David Denny said: “Consumers different needs from bedding have implications for pricing, promotion, and product developments. The industry will need to tailor messages of the core selling point of bedding plants – paying particular attention to inspiring and enthusing a new generation of younger gardeners.”

Denny adds: “The visibility of bedding impacts differently on different consumers. For example, for keener gardener’s visibility in public displays like roundabouts acts as a prompt for purchase of bedding plants but for younger less experienced gardeners a case of ‘keeping up with the Joneses’’ drives demand.”

As well as providing an insight into the differing demographics drivers and perceptions the report also discusses levels of bedding plant awareness and substitution and draws attention to the most successful purchase channels.

The key findings include:

Spend and decision making for the category is predominantly female-led, with women spending roughly 50% more on bedding plants than men

There are low levels of substitution of bedding for other plants among purchasers

Awareness of bedding plants is high with half of households with gardens growing them

Garden centres, retail nurseries and DIY stores predominate as bedding plant purchase channels. Supermarkets are beginning to establish themselves as a retail channel for bedding but internet purchase is still low with only 5% of purchasers likely to use the internet for future bedding orders.

The report concludes with several handy one-page guides designed as starting points to help marketing teams, plant area managers and merchandisers to apply these research results. Together with their own expertise and experience the tools should help exploit this research for maximum industry benefit.

‘Bedding Plants: Consumers’ attitudes, wants and needs’ is available at £395 +VAT with a discounted rate of £195+VAT for HTA members. For further information or to order your copy visit the market information section of the HTA website .